|Theresa Nessralla thought she merely had the flu. "I had a heavy chest and a dry cough," said the 59-year-old South Shore woman who worked in customer service at the time, in the winter of 2006. "I just got weaker and weaker," she said. "Breathing became tough." After several weeks, she ended up at the emergency room at a local hospital. "First, they told me I had pneumonia," she said. The next day, however, she received a visit from a cardiologist. "He said my heart was weak," she said. "They were going to run some tests and watch me."
Ultimately, Nessralla was diagnosed with congestive heart failure, a condition where the heart can't pump enough blood to meet the body's requirements.
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